Cinema halls to open in Maharashtra from 5th November with precautions

Cinema halls in Maharashtra will open from 5th November with 50% capacity and strict measures to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.

Maharashtra had shut the door of its cinema halls to the audience since the lockdown began in March owing to the Coronavirus pandemic. However, the cinema halls and multiplexes are all set to open from tomorrow (5th November).

An order issued by the state government of Maharashtra states that cinema halls and multiplexes can start operating from 5th November with 50% capacity. However, strict measures will have to be implemented to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.

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The order reads, “Cinema halls/theatres/multiplexes/drama theatres will be allowed to open with 50% of their seating capacity in areas outside the Containment Zones only with effect from November 5, 2020. No eatables will be allowed inside the Cinema halls/theatres/multiplexes/drama theatres. The SOP for the same will be issued by the Cultural Affairs Department and local authorities. The Cultural Affairs Department will take into consideration the SOP issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Further, all norms of social distancing and precaution to prevent Covid-19 shall be followed.”

Earlier in October, Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray had held a virtual meeting with cinema hall and multiplex owners. He had assured them that the cultural department was trying their level best to have the theatres reopen for the audience.

In a statement, the CM had mentioned, “In a cinema hall, people are in a closed air-conditioned space for nearly two hours. Hence, we want to ensure complete cleanliness and sanitisation as well as physical distancing. There is a need to ensure only 50% seats are occupied.”

The news has been welcomed by filmmakers, film exhibitors, and theatre owners across the state.